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  1. #1
    Registered User ejacobs's Avatar
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    2005 EP3 Long-Term Review

    Hey Folks,
    Iíve owned my 2005 Si for about 10 years now. I got a little inspiration from Curt (iR-VTEC2), who posted a similar update, so I thought Iíd report on my ownership experience. I bought mine from a dealer with just 17K miles in February 2007, and I have just under 80K on it now. Itís always been garaged. Iím obviously a geek about it, so fair warning here!

    Stock w/ some accessories
    Iím not a modder, but I made a couple small changes right after I bought it. These included removing the i-VTEC stickers (and some cheap pinstripes), swapping the tail lights for 2002-03 ones (thanks to a post here I found before the site crash), and adding Honda side trim in the factory color, Honda mud guards, and a K&N drop-in air filter. Iíve gone through several sets of wipers--I just stick with Honda inserts. I finally replaced the head stereo unit a couple years ago--not sure why I waited so long because the difference is day and night, even with just the factory speakers!

    Fluids
    I ran Castrol synthetic blend oil until about 42K, then switched to Castrol full synthetic. Iíve always used either a Mobil1 or Purolator One oil filter. I had an oil analysis done from Blackstone Labs a couple years ago after a 7K mile oil change and they basically said try for 9K for the next change because engine wear and oil integrity were still so strong. Iíve changed the brake, clutch, and transmission fluid twice and the coolant once, always with Honda fluids.

    Tires
    I replaced the original Michelin Pilot HX MXM4 tires at 18K and have alternated between all-seasons in the summer with dedicated winter tires. Details:
    Dunlop Winter Sport 3D: 27,000 (end total)
    Yokohama Avid V4S: 29,000 (current)
    Dunlop Winter Sport 4D: 2,000 (current)
    The Yokohamas still have some tread, but are finally starting to crack a little with age. Iíd highly recommend them, but they no longer make the V4S. The first set of Dunlops had some tread but had turned rock hard and started cracking over time, making them mostly worthless in snow.

    ďFailuresĒ
    The car has held up really well, to say the least. The only thing that has failed is the driver side door lock actuator, which cost me about $35 to fix. Itís still on the original brakes. The original battery lasted 8 years, so I replaced it with another one from Honda, and it actually cost less than all the other ones that I priced. I had the alignment done once back in 2009 and I havenít felt the need for it to be done again because it doesnít pull, drift, or wear out tires unevenly at all. I replaced the cruise control button ďONĒ light, and a few headlight bulbs. The windshield was nailed and cracked by a rock from a truck while going over Vail Pass, so Iím on my second one. I wax it once or twice a year, so beyond rock chips and a few minor scratches, the paint is very good. Of course, the headlights have needed ďdefoggingĒ a few times, and the ďcoffin creakĒ in the steering column has always been there. I donít really notice it.

    The EP3 is definitely not a passengerís car. As you all know, the stock ride is very firm compared to a typical car, but my 6 and 3 year-old donít yet know the difference during the daily shuttle. I like taking it long distance, and itís great for camping solo. Itís been to Great Basin NP in Nevada, Ojo Caliente in New Mexico, Eastern Ohio, and Northern Wisconsin. Iíve gotten as high as 38 and as low as 24 mpg on tanks of fuel, usually depending on speed and winds. Itís a blast to tear around canyon corners and any winding roads. It may not have gobs of power, but I can throw it in 5th gear with the cruise set on 70 and fly right up to the Eisenhower Tunnel with no downshifting.

    I think the car got a bad rap for not having 200 hp when it came out, and then nobody really gave it a chance. I came close to selling it and buying a TSX a few years ago, but Iím glad I didnít. This is my kind of car: simple, no frills, cheap, and fun for the money. Itís not pretty, but it makes up for it in practicality and reliability. If something ever happened to it I donít know what I would look for. The Fit is the closest thing to it that Honda makes, but Iíd like a driverís car. Maybe Iíll hand this one down to my 6 year-old after the next 10 years.

    Thanks to everyone who shares and gives advice on this site.

    Cheers!

    E

  2. #2
    Registered User ejacobs's Avatar
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  3. #3
    heh heh.. "member" BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Glad you've enjoyed it all these years. Maybe I'll write my own long-term review before I sell my '02.

  4. #4
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    I'm a few thousand higher on the mileage and need new brakes. I changed all the fluids when I got it at 70. Replaced battery, O2, and TPS. Broke purge when doing the TPS.

  5. #5
    Registered User Import_Tuna's Avatar
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    Very nice story. You obviously love the thing. I've had my SiR since '08 and I couldn't tell you what I would replace it with. Truthfully, I don't think you're going to enjoy a Fit very much after driving your Si for so long. Like you say, the Fit is not a real driver's car.

    Well, good on ya. Here's to another ten years!

    Sent from my SGP311 using Tapatalk

  6. #6
    Registered User
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    Clean, will you ever install any OEM part goodies either USDM or JDM or UKDM

  7. #7
    Registered User ejacobs's Avatar
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    8/25/19
    Itís been almost three years since I wrote this long-term review, and Iím back for a little follow-up. Here I am still daily driving this guy, now up to 98K miles on the clock. A couple years ago we had a huge hail storm. Miraculously, my insurance company did not deem the car totaled. I went ahead with getting the paintless dent removal done, estimated originally at about $3400 worth of damage and ultimately being a bit over $4000 to fix after supplements. The local shop I went with did a great job.

    Last year I bought a set of the new (at the time) Bridgestone Potenza RE980AS skins through TireRack, and I have to say they are phenomenal. Super sticky and pretty comfortable, too. I did have to replace another couple of dash light bulbs (the blue/red temp knob and hazard light button), and I typically replace each headlight bulb about once every three years, give or take--Iíve been using Sylvania SilverStars, which Iíve found last longer than Hellas. Iíve also had to reglue each side mirror glass on a few times over the years. I use 3M auto trim adhesive.

    The only other repair I had to do previously was the driver side door actuator (the part that works the power locking). This year I had to do the passenger side. Apparently this is a typical weak point across Honda models of the era, especially the CR-V. I of course used a Genuine Honda part ($50), and it took me about 30 minutes to do. So my actual mechanical repair totals are now sitting at a whopping $85. For 12+ years, thatís pretty hard to beat. Thatís amazing to me. Itís still on the original brakes!

    The trusty EP3 continues to be a fun and practical car that just works. How could I ever expect another car to be as cheap to own? When the hail storm happened, I wondered if it was finally time to get a new Si (I love the shape of the current Si coupe, but man the details are so busy, not to mention the wing, which is overkill for me). In the end Iím glad I just bit the bullet, got the dents removed and hung onto it--mainly because itís so cheap to own, but also because itís so hassle-free for a nearly 15 year-old car. I would drive it anywhere. Maybe Iíll reassess when the 11th gen Si debuts. Or maybe Iíll hang onto it another six years to make it my sonís first car, who knows.

  8. #8
    Registered User tommy's Avatar
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    Great write-ups! Glad that it's been so trouble-free for you all of these years. I've had a Civic coupe as a loaner a couple of times, and in addition to what you've said, the headroom is truly awful. i'm 5' 10" and graze the sunroof trim. Oy.

    Looking forward to you next update in three years. :)

  9. #9
    Registered User ejacobs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommy View Post
    Great write-ups! Glad that it's been so trouble-free for you all of these years. I've had a Civic coupe as a loaner a couple of times, and in addition to what you've said, the headroom is truly awful. i'm 5' 10" and graze the sunroof trim. Oy.

    Looking forward to you next update in three years. :)
    Thanks! Iím 5í10Ē as well so maybe Iíll have to revisit the new Si idea in 2022ish when the 11th gens are out. So yes, see you in three years haha!

  10. #10
    Registered User tommy's Avatar
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    I'm flying into Denver a week from tomorrow. Hope the weather is good!

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